When I first ventured into mobile gaming, Angry Birds Star Wars was one of the first games I downloaded. I spent hours slingshotting the birds into the unsteady intergalactic structures, trying to crush the Pig Troopers.
It's been over a decade since the original Angry Birds mobile game took the world by storm. Rovio Entertainment's iconic game has seen more than 4.5 billion downloads, and it's spawned , spinoff games and . The franchise is still going strong, with Angry Birds Reloaded joining the extensive catalog of games on -- Apple's $5-a-month gaming service -- on Friday.
Angry Birds Reloaded is a marriage of the classic Angry Birds physics-based gameplay with a modern polish, Ben Mattes, senior vice president of the future of gaming and Angry Birds strategy, told CNET.
"It should be both immediately nostalgic to fans of the original angry birds and also feel fresh, stylish and new," Mattes said in an email.
In Angry Birds Reloaded, King Pig and his eagle minions have stolen eggs, and the birds must retrieve them before it's too late. The remastered game brings new characters, challenges, dynamic gameplay modes and visual enhancements. But you can still slingshot Red, Chuck, Bomb, Silver and the rest of the Angry Birds gang.
Angry Birds' staying power is due in part to its universality and accessibility, which welcomes players of all ages, Mattes said. But behind its simplicity lies a need for strategy that adds depth to the game and keeps people coming back.
Taking advantage of new tech
Angry Birds Reloaded is launching at a time when devices run laps around those available at its 2009 release.and other features have brought mobile gaming to new heights. Mattes says the iconic series is playable on both high- and low-end devices, remaining independent of certain hardware features.
"Of course the game installs and starts quicker with 5G. A14 is cool, but our games run 60 fps on much older hardware too, so no need for anyone to feel FOMO," Mattes said.
Even though it's hard to imagine someone who hasn't at least heard of Angry Birds, Rovio still thinks there's room to grow. Angry Birds Reloaded is the chance for an entire generation of kids to meet the beloved franchise, according to Mattes. But don't fret, original fans: Rovio continues to work on tailored experiences for those who've been playing since first launch.
"We absolutely feel Angry Birds has historically brought smiles and joy to all ages, everywhere, and we're working hard to ensure that never changes," Mattes said.
With the launch of Angry Birds Reloaded,and Alto's Odyssey, Apple Arcade is nearing 200 games with .
If you're interested in trying Apple Arcade, you can get a three-month free trial of Apple Arcade with the purchase of a new device, or one month for free if you're signing up for the first time. Open the App Store and tap the little joystick icon at the bottom of the screen to launch the service.
Another option is thesubscription bundle, which launched last year. Apple One makes it easier and more affordable to get up to six Apple subscription services, Apple Arcade included, for one price. Most recently, the service teamed up with .
For more, check outand .